BOONE — Appalachian State student Rachel Gallardo was named the Top of the Rock during Homecoming ceremonies at halftime of Appalachian State’s 45-7 win over visiting South Alabama on Sept. 29. Gallardo was escorted by her father, Jose Gallardo, when her name was announced in front of the Homecoming crowd of 25,000 at Kidd Brewer Stadium.
Gallardo represented the College Diabetes Network, which is also known as the Broken Pancreas Club, a new club on the App State campus.
A senior from Eden, located about 40 minutes north of Greensboro, Gallardo is studying nutrition and food with a focus on dietetics.
She said the Broken Pancreas Club is available for support for students who have the disease. Gallardo knows plenty about the disease since she has lived with Type 1 diabetes since she was 3 years old.
“I’ve had to grow up advocating for myself and not rely on others to do it for me,” Gallardo said.
“This is a huge deal for this club,” Gallardo said. “I want to be the megaphone for this organization so we can grow and continue our mission to educate and advocate for students with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.”
Gallardo is active in several activities on campus. She is a percussion section leader for the Appalachian State marching band and is a manager for App State’s wrestling team.
She also is an intern for AppFuel, a member of the Hispanic Student Association and a member of the Appalachian Student Dietetics Association.
The Top of the Rock replaced the Homecoming Queen and King honors that used to be given to App State students.
“It’s a big day for College Diabetes Network,” Gallardo said. “It’s a big day for App State wrestling. It’s a big day for the App State marching band. It’s just crazy.”